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Imaikalani Devault Photo: Tony Heff



Luke Shepardson reaps the glassy rewards of a strike mission to Tahiti. Photo: Brendon Oneill


06 Free Parking 14 Editor’s Note 16 News & Events 30 Baggage Fees 32 Grom Report 36 Monycas’s Travel Tips 62 10 Questions with Imai 66 Juniors / Cody Young 70 She Rips 74 Pau Hana 78 Environment 80 Industry Notes 82 Last Look

Surfer: Sierra Lerback Photo: Keoki



GO THERE 3 Summer Strike Mission Destinations










Field notes from Southeastern Indonesia

We hand toss our poke every day using fresh fish from the Pier 38 Fish Auction .


Pier 38 Fish Market

970 N. Kalaheo Ave. Near Aikahi Park Shopping Center 808-263-3787 Open Daily

1129 N. Nimitz Hwy 808-983-1263 Mon-Sat: 6:30am-6:00pm Sun: 10:00am-4:00pm

DANCING AMONGST THE SUNSHINE COAST Rosie Jaffurs, Sierra LerBack and Keoki Saguibo venture to Australia’s wave rich Sunshine Coast for the Noosa Festival of Surfing, taking advantage of the area’s world class righthand pointbreaks atop longboards and twin fins, from Noosa to Byron and everything in between

Tony Heff


Publisher Mike Latronic Managing Editor Cash Lambert Photo Editor Tony Heff Art Director John Weaver Multimedia Director Tyler Rock Ambassador-at-Large Chris Latronic West Coast Ambassador Kurt Steinmetz Staff Photographers Tony Heff, Chris Latronic, Mike Latronic, Tyler Rock, Keoki Saguibo Free Thinkers Kahi Pacarro Intern Sara Aguilar

Senior Contributing Photographers

Erik Aeder, Eric Baeseman (, Brian Bielmann, Ryan Craig, Jeff Divine, Pete Frieden, Dane Grady, Bryce Johnson, Ha’a Keaulana, Ehitu Keeling, Laserwolf, Bruno Lemos, Mana, Zak Noyle, Shawn Pila, Jim Russi, Jason Shibata, Spencer Suitt, Tai Vandyke

Contributing Photographers

John Bilderback, Marc Chambers, Dayanidhi Das, Brooke Dombroski, DoomaPhoto, Rick Doyle, Isaac Frazer, Pete Hodgson, Joli, Kin Kimoto, Claire Murphy, Dave “Nelly” Nelson, Nick Ricca, Gavin Shige, Heath Thompson, Bill Taylor, Wyatt Tillotson, Jimmy Wilson, Cole Yamane Senior Account Executive Brian Lewis Business Coordinator Cora Sanchez Office Manager Rieka Marzouki FREESURF MAGAZINE is distributed at all Jamba Juice locations, most fine surf shops and select specialty stores throughout Hawai‘i. You can also pick up FREESURF on the mainland at Barnes & Noble and Borders bookstores and select newsstands. Ask for it by name at your local surf shop! Subscribe at Other than “Free Postage” letters, we do not accept unsolicited editorial submissions without first establishing

Watch Board Stories on Channel 12, or 1012 HD in Hawai`i or at

contact with the editor. FreeSurf, Manulele Inc. and its associates is not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged submissions or their return. One-way correspondence can be sent to P.O. Box 1161, Hale‘iwa, HI 96712 E-mail editorial inquiries to A product of Manulele, Inc. 2015

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EDITOR’S NOTE By Cash Lambert The swell report looked dismal. Before jetting off on a recent summer vacation to a blue water sanctuary in the Caribbean, I decided to leave surfboards - and the hope of scoring waves - at home.

It wasn’t the biggest swell I’ve surfed. The wave wasn’t high performance. And the longboard I borrowed was full of dings. But it was the unexpected experience to get there that made the session, in my mind, all time.

After a few days of cruising the dreamy isle, located in the U.S Virgin Islands, unexpected whitewash began funneling towards the golden sand beaches. I frantically searched the island for a board, but couldn’t find a rental. The following afternoon, while walking out of a dimly-lit grocery store, I glanced at a collection of classifieds and noticed a worn and smudged business card of someone offering surf lessons. I quickly called the number, and a raspy voice on the other end of the line told me I could borrow a longboard for a morning session. The catch? I had to find him at a secret break, using mountains, dirt roads and intuition as a guide.

Traveling in search of waves or finding some along the way creates a sense of unparalleled adventure, and provides us with unique stories to share.

The next morning, after winding along an unpaved road that featured steep and deadly dropoffs, I parked and trekked down a sketchy incline, bushwhacking my way until I found an older fellow with an enormous, Biblical-sized beard sitting on the beach. We talked story about his surfing life on the island as funsized surf crashed in front of us, and then I paddled out into the empty lineup.

Welcome to our annual Travel issue, where we showcase exotic waves, exotic locations and stories of the experiences it took to get there. Venture to the southeastern reaches of Indonesia for a variety of waves on page 36, experience wave hunting with longboards and twin fins in Australia on page 56, and before you choose your next surf destination (we recommend 3 locations on page 24), check our surfboard baggage fee guide on page 28 to compare the cost of bringing your boards. Truth is, I don’t remember the name of the man I borrowed the surfboard from. I don’t remember the name of the wave, and I certainly don’t remember how to find it. I think it’s that curiosity that will lead me back one day.


Hawaii’s Biggest and Best Selection of Surf Gear

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Photo: Heff/Manulele

With over 25 different surfboard models to choose from, HIC’s got the right board to take your surfing to the next level.

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E V E N T S Latronic




Nelson Ahina




Kai Salas

Sally Cohen


Seeing a surfer perched on the nose of longboard at Queens is always a magical moment and has been revered by enthusiasts throughout history. In the wake of noseriding purists came the fundamental revolution of the traditional longboard contest, where founders imagined a specialty longboard event based on the pinnacle of logging surf performance: noseriding. The 2017 Hawaiian Noseriding Team Classic Presented by Surf Garage ran over the weekend of July 8-9th with 2-4 foot swell funneling into Waikiki’s blue waters. The judging dynamic required each competitor to tape the nose of their boards at the lengths of 12” and 24” respective to their division. Judges used timers to give riders points for allotted time and style while on the nose. Along with the Professional Men's and Women's divisions were Team divisions, where companies and surf clubs entered an entire team into the event, and this year's winner was Team "Free Time” from Maui.


In the Men's Pro division, the audience on hand saw young bucks challenge the old guard riding atop perfect walls. Kai Sallas didn’t train much for this event (unless you call teaching surf lessons training), but used his homegrown expertise to find just what he needed to advance all the way through to the Final. Peaking at just the right time, Kai threaded one of the best noserides of the event and took out the win. Young Johnny "the Ripper” Von Hohenstein won the award for longest nose ride with a 21 second ensemble that tracked the entire Queens reef. The women were on fire in this event, dancing on the Waikiki waters and earning big scores along the way. Lola Schremmer came out on top for the Pro Women’s division, edging out powerhouse’s Kirra Seale and Rosie Jaffurs in a stacked final. Although prizes and placings were given away, contest director Toru Yamaguchi noted the essence of the event was simply fun.

E V E N T S Keoki







John Van Hohenstein

Lola Schremmer 1st Place Mens Pro


Pro Women 1 Lola Schremmer 2 Kirra Seale 3 Rosie Jaffurs 4 Sammy Rust 5 Kelis Kaleopaa Longest Noseride 1 John Van Hohenstein

Team Open 2nd Place: Moku Groms Haley Otto Sammy Rust Kelis Kaleopaa John Van Hohenstein Ethan Speltz Team Open 3rd Place: Surf Garage Toru Yamaguchi Kai Sallas Toots Achinges Akoi Sugiyama Kenta Araki

John Van Hohenstein

Pro Men’s 1 Kai Sallas 2 Mau Ah Hee 3 John Paul Kaleopaa 4 Fritz Belmoro 5 John Van Hohenstein

Team Open 1st Place: Free Time Kaimana Takayama Mau Ah Hee Kaniela Stewart Kekaula Cambell Kelly Rodrigues

Team Classic Winners Team Wahine 1st Place: Kai Coffee Haley Otto Sammy Rust Keani Canullo Lala Thomas Sally Cohen Team Classic Winners Team Wahine 2nd Place: Kuleana Sun Protection Mason Schremmer Lola Schremmer Kelis Kaleopaa Sasha Kauhane Lilliana

Team Open 4th Place: Margaritaville Mates Mason Schremmer Lola Schremmer Nelson Ahina Sasha Kauhane Kirra Seale Vintage Board Pre 1968 24” Tape Line 1 Kai Sallas 2 Fritza Belmoro 3 David Carvalho 4 Link Earle 5 Mackenzie Yoshida

For a full gallery of images for the 2017 Hawaii Noseriding Team Classic Presented by Surf Garage, visit

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Kai Martin Brodi Sale

Wyatt McHale Hawaii’s juniors and groms circle the month of July on the calendar each year. In the months prior, they each enact a routine of daily physical training, from surfing to grueling gym workouts, along with mental preparation all in hopes that it will pay off at the NSSA National Championships in July, where they can test their growing repertoire against a National crop of talent. This year, those who call Hawaii home

Cole Alves

laid claim to big scores and trophies, and there was a consistent Hawaiian presence on the podium.

S TA N D O U T R E S U LT S Barron Mamiya - Open Men’s Mayor’s Cup Champion and AI Open Men’s Standout Award Inspired by Andy Irons Summer Macedo - Open Women’s Mayor’s Cup Champion Wyatt McHale - Open Junior’s Champion and Highest GPA with Top Nationals Performance Presented by Conner Coffin Award Rylan Beavers - Open Mini Groms Champion Cole Alves - Explorer Junior’s Champion and Explorer Men’s Runner Up Brodi Sale - Explorer Boy’s Champion Luana Silva - Explorer Super Girl’s Champion, Explorer Girl’s 4th Place Mason Schremmer - Explorer Women’s Longboard

Summer Macedo

Champion Eweleiula Wong - Explorer Super Girl’s Runner Up, and Carissa Moore Rookie of the Year Award For the full list of results, visit


Shion Crawford

Ian Thurtell




Catching up with the North Shore native who is rapidly ascending the Women’s Qualifying Series ranks

Take us through your recent strings of wins — the Ballito Pro Junior, the Jordy Smith Cape Town Surf Pro QS, your Junior Pro win at the SA Open of Surfing and more. What are your emotions and thoughts after your incredible wins?

Zoe McDougall kicked off 2017 with a win at the Sunset Pro Junior Final in January, and at the awards ceremony, her focus was set on making 2017 a career year: “I just want to carry this momentum,” she said.

I think that winning these contests has been a result of my surroundings on this leg of the QS tour. I’ve been having so much fun in South Africa and scoring such good waves and surfing so much. When I first arrived here, I was really motivated to win my first QS and after that, I just wanted to do the best I could and try for my best results possible.

That’s exactly what the 17-year-old, with blonde hair, a bright smile and a wicked forehand attack, has done. She won her first World Surf League Qualifying Series event in April at the Corona Durban Surf Pro in South Africa. Two months later, she was on the podium again, winning both the SA Open of Surfing Junior Pro, and the Open Women’s QS 1000. Two weeks later, she was chaired up the beach at the Jordy Smith Cape Town Surf Pro QS, and, you guessed it: a week later, she was holding the first place prize at the Ballito Pro Junior. In short, Zoe has been on an absolute tear, and we had to find out what the catalyst has been for her unprecedented competitive run.

What has lead to such success so far in 2017? Anything you’re doing differently, or specific parts of your surfing that you’ve been working on? It’s definitely the constant support I have from my boyfriend, Matthew McGillivray. It’s helped me so much traveling with him, because he surfs so much and is so focused. Sometimes it’s hard for him to play both the boyfriend and the coach roll, but he’s really good at it and I’ve learn a lot from him and his surfing. What have you learned throughout this year through traveling and competitions? Even though I’m used to a lot of traveling, this leg in South Africa has taught me even more about adjusting to your surroundings.



W O R D S : Z O E


Ian Thurtell


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Cape Town was the coldest place I’ve ever been and was 40 degrees during the morning freesurfs. I’m not used to that! How have these wins had an effect on your confidence and on your overall surfing goals? I think that my Quarterfinal result at Junior Worlds in Australia at the beginning of the year gave me a lot of self belief in situations where I doubted myself. South Africa has given me confidence and peace in heats that I didn’t have before. Going into a contest, I feel like I’m not as nervous and can focus on my surfing more now than the result. With so much traveling, how do you maintain a fitness routine and eating well? I think that one of the most challenging things while traveling is to stay on top of your nutrition. My parents have raised me to eat healthy and drilled it into my head since I was little. My sponsor Clif Bar has also taught me a lot about what to eat and why. I definitely feel the difference when I’m not eating well on the road and I try to make sure that I’m eating lots of fresh food. My dad always packs a giant vitamin box with everything I need, and I try to remember to take them. I always travel with spirulina tablets, so if for some reason I can't eat enough greens, at least I have those. Any funny stories from your travels this year? There are so many funny moments that happen on the road that it's hard to keep track, but we’re always laughing! One that comes to mind was a couple months ago, my dad came to South Africa for a couple weeks and he scored waves, he was ripping. One morning we were out at Supers, and I got a bomb but he burned me and I think he got barreled! Nobody knew who he was because he was wearing a hooded wetsuit and the locals were going to yell at him but then I said ‘wait no it's okay that's my dad!’ What’s your focus headed into the second half of 2017? Training hard and working on improving my surfing. I will also be traveling to the rest of the important QS events, trying my best, then I’m coming home to enjoy winter back home on the North Shore!

u·ku·le·le o͞o-ko͞oˈley-ley

n. An excursion-ready, four-stringed instrument built for your next destination.

Kala ukuleles are available online and in surf shops coast to coast.




Brent Bielmann







Traveling to the idyllic warm waters of Tahiti for surf immediately conjures the thought of Teahupoo, with massive, code red-size waves detonating over a shallow and razor sharp reef. Teahupoo does offer fun-sized days with solid south/southwest swell in the water, but it remains for experts only. Other than the famed break, there are other waves to explore throughout the 7 islands that make up Tahiti. Like Taapuna, a left hander close to Papeete. There’s Maraa too, which is a technical wave to master, a powerful left hander known as Vairao, and for less experienced surfers, a beachbreak called Papara. The season for surf extends from June to September, and if the winds aren’t right but there is swell in the water, you can utilize the ferry system to explore other islands.

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Uluwatu, Desert Point, Padang Padang, Lakey Peak, G-Land...If the mere mention of these waves in Indonesia doesn’t make you start searching for airline tickets, we’re not sure what will. Like the North Shore in the winter time, Indo, acting as a swell magnet, is simply the place to be during summer. Whether you’re staying in front of one wave in particular, chartering a boat or visiting multiple breaks in the islands, there’s a good chance you’ll find the wave of your life here, along with a few too many Bintangs. Yes, most of the aforementioned breaks can be notoriously crowded, so if you’re willing to explore off the beaten path, you can find empty, hollow waves thanks to summertime south swells.

Ryan Craig


lefts, rights, reef breaks, beach breaks. Venture into Baja for the ultimate road trip, where you can camp on the beach and zip open the tent to see reeling waves in the early morning golden light. Not a big fan of crowds? In Baja, it’s only a matter of time until you stumble upon an empty lineup. There’s also heaps of waves worth your time and dime during the summer months in mainland Mexico, like Ensenada, Salina Cruz, Puerto Escondido and more.

Pete Frieden



Mexico boasts thousands of miles of coastline, rife with waves of varying makeup and difficulty: GO THERE: 3 DESTINATIONS (LISTACLE)

On the Beach Since 1965 (808) 637-SURF Sur

TRAVELING THIS SUMMER? HERE’S OUR BAGGAGE FEE GUIDE It’s the ultimate pay to play scenario: In order to get to those blue water, barreling lefts and those empty and glassy rights in an international locale, you must first entrust your finely tuned quiver to airlines, who, after being paid a bit of cash, will store your surfboard until arrival. But there’s heaps of questions involved: How much will it cost? How many boards can you bring? Is your board bag too big? That’s why we compiled a bit of information to help you reach your destination with less hassle, so here’s baggage fee information you need to know before setting off on your summer surf trip.



Any neighbor Island: $35

The fine print Hawaiian Airlines | Allows one board bag up to 50 lbs, and the bag may contain any number of boards. Price also varies according to where you are traveling. Any neighbor Island: $35 and a max length of 131 inches. For all other destinations, max length is 115 inches. North America: $100. Free to Australia and New Zealand if it’s used as a checked bag. Japan, China, and Korea $150. Pago Pago $150. Papeete $150.


Aero Mexico | $75 within Mexico. International travel is $150. Max length allowed per piece on a narrow body cabin is 80 inches, and max length allowed per piece on a wide body cabin 115 inches. Max weight is 100 pounds.


Philippine Airlines | International bag fees are dependent on bag weight. 15 kgs max weight.


Air Canada | $50 handling fee per board. Counts as one piece of baggage. If the checked baggage allowance is exceeded, more fees apply. Two handling fees apply for two boards packed in the same bag.


Air New Zealand | Free. If a board is 6’5” or under, it counts as a standard checked bag. Board bags can contain more than one piece of related equipment. If board bag exceeds weight limit or if baggage allowance is exceeded, fees apply. Purchasing a pre-paid extra bag is cheaper.


Air Tahiti Nui | Free if not exceeding 50 pounds and 98 inches. Additional boards are subject to excess fees.


*Counts as one piece of baggage

Qantas | Free as part of checked baggage allowance as long as it does not exceed 70 pounds and 9 feet. Excess fees apply if baggage allowance is exceeded.


Go to the source NORTH SHORE OAHU



12-YEAR-OLD KAISER AUBERLEN REPORTS FROM PUMPING LAKEY PEAK by Kaiser Auberlen My name is Kaiser Auberlen, and I am a 12-year-old North Shore native. I’ve been surfing for 7 years and have been lucky enough to travel all over the world looking for waves. I just returned from an amazing trip to Lakey Peak, Sumbawa, where I went to visit my Indo Uncle Oney Anwar. It was an amazing trip, and I love how surfing takes you to great places where you can meet cool people and get good waves!

Oney is the top professional Indonesian surfer and also a Rip Curl teammate. He always stays with us when he’s in Hawaii and has been asking us for years to come visit him at his home, so finally we did. Three plane flights and a two hour drive later, we had arrived. On my first day, I awoke to pumping 4-6 foot Lakey Peak. It’s a sick wave, a perfect peak with a long left and 2 barreling sections at low tide. The right is almost like an easier version of Backdoor, if there is such a thing. At high tide, it becomes an incredible performance wave, like Trestles on steroids. We surfed our brains out and came in and had breakfast at what became our usual place, Fatmahs. Then in the afternoon, we went and surfed Periscopes. It was the best right I have ever seen. This would be our routine for the next 2 weeks. That same day, I also got to meet a lot of the local kids. Waduha, Eka, Fajuri, Rasa, Rama, Rafi and I all became good friends. We became the Nungas squad because that’s where we would surf and hang out a lot of the time. They were so nice to me and really welcomed me into their group. We played with spinning tops they 32

made out of wood themselves, and they even taught me how to speak some Indonesian. I brought a football and taught them how to play. It’s really cool to know that you can go anywhere in the world and meet nice people. I’ll never forget them. Lakey Peak is an awesome set up, like a mini North Shore. You have Lakey Peak in the middle, directly in front of the Aman Gati Hotel. To the left about 200 yards is Lakey Pipe, a thick grinding left barrel and to the right is Nungas, a long freighttraining left. They are all world-class lefts, so glad I’m a goofy footer! Cobblestones and Periscopes are outside of the Lakey village. You have to take some gnarly scooter rides on bumpy roads with lots of mud to get there, and some of the rides to Periscopes were almost as fun as the surf! During our two week trip, we scored some awesome waves. A couple days at Lakey Peak were solid 6-8 foot with perfect barrels and it never got under 4 foot. My dad, a friend of ours and I even soloed Lakey Pipe three times, trading off perfect barrels. It was unbelievable! I surfed Nungas a few times with my new Indonesian friends as well. Periscopes is the best right

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I have ever surfed. It’s your typical Indo wave, you just see it peeling down the point in your direction and decide which one you want. The wave has good barrels and epic sections to hit the lip. To say we scored good waves on this trip would be an understatement! Not only did we have unreal sessions in the water; we also had some amazing experiences on land as well. One of the coolest things that happened was when all my new friends gave me all their spinning tops that they made by hand so I could play with my friends when I got home in Hawaii. The kids didn’t have much. There aren’t any toy stores so for them to hand their tops to me, it was very special. I will never forget that. We also took the time to go by a local school. My dad and I brought school supplies such as crayons, markers, pens, pencils and goody bags from my sponsors Rip Curl, Vans and Sun Bum for the kids. My dad is trying to teach me that you can’t go to these places and just take, just surf waves or whatever. You need to give back. The kids were so stoked and I loved it as well. Giving back makes you feel good inside. I learned that it doesn’t matter what you give, trying to do something is what’s important. I had a fantastic trip, from unbelievable waves to meeting great new friends and learning a lot along the way. Traveling is a great way to learn about people and yourself, and I think if we all were a little more friendly, helped others when we can and take care of our planet, we would all be a little better off. And if you can get sick barrels along the way, even better!

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TRAVEL ESSENTIALS / MONYCA ELEOGRAM Sunscreen “If I’m surfing all day in major sun conditions, Vertra Sunscreen is hands down what I’m bringing. It works, it stays on all day, and I feel like it gives me nice coverage. I like it because it’s actually the color of my skin. I even put it on my lips, mixing it with lipstick so it gives it a nice tint. It’s a surf trip essential.”

Speaker “I always have to have music. This is a new essential, and I always bring it now.”

Hair Mist “I use ‘Awapuhi Coconut Hair Therapy Mist from Aloha Grown Beauty to protect my hair from harmful rays, sun damage and salt. It’s organic, and locally made on Maui.”

Sun Hat “I call this my Auntie hat because it’s wide brimmed and has a velcro in the back, so my bun can go through the top because there’s no top. I bring that everywhere. It’s absolutely an essential.”

Disposable Camera

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“I like to have a disposable camera with me for at least one shot. I don’t take a lot of pictures, but if it’s one special thing that happens, I’ll take a picture of it.”

Water Bottle “I always bring my own water bottle, because if there is access to some type of filtration system, you don’t have to create waste by using multiple plastic water bottles and also, you know it’s yours. Drink Water is an initiative promoting drinking water, and I like it because it’s such a raw, simple statement.”

Field Notes from Remote Southeastern Indonesia By Tyler Rock

Tyler Rock

Roaming in Rotè

When you get invited to venture to lesser known region of Indonesia, you go. Whether you’ve been to Indonesia or not, the thoughts of warm, blue, ruler-edged waves can get even the most novice surfer excited. And that’s exactly what the island of Rote, found at the southeastern end of Indonesia, offered. In early June, Maui surfers Imai Devault, Cody Young, Ola and Monyca Eleogram, Big Island bodyboarder Will Petrovic, and Florida grom Robbie McCormick embarked on a 10-day stay at Nemberala Beach Resort on the western coast of Palau Rote.

The small island off the coast of Timor boasts a free range lifestyle, where the farm animals are just as abundant as waves. Nestled just over 300 miles northeast of Australia, a steady offshore breeze grooms the region’s most popular wave, the long rippable left hand walls of T-Land. But beyond that lies a number of less crowded high performance surf spots. And with a little ambition, a boat or scooter and some luck, the crew scored waves just around the corner better than they could have ever imagined.

Photos Tony Heff

Imai Devault

In order to get to Bali, which is minimum two flights from Hawaii or the mainland USA. An overnight in Bali is typical, followed by an inter-island flight to Kupang, West Timor. From there, it’s either a ferry ride or small commuter plane to Rote, and then an hour and a half drive to Nemberala in West Rote.

Monyca Eleogram

Day 1: Settling in

“Getting here is definitely a mission from Hawaii,” Monyca told me, “but Ola and I did it pretty sweet because we spent time in Japan first, and then Bali so we broke up the trip. If I had friends coming here, I’d recommend doing that, breaking it up and checking out a few places along the way.” As was to be expected, there were some hitches. Our boards weren’t able to fit on the commuter flight, meaning the first afternoon was a lay day since the boards weren’t going to be delivered until the next day. Everyone spent the time getting settled in and comfortable at Nemberala Beach Resort (NBR), which would be our home for the next 10 days.

“I’m looking forward to getting good waves, hopefully some barrels, but mostly looking forward to surfing with my friends and making new friends,” Cody told me as we discussed the swell. “Hopefully we can score waves that we’ve never heard of or seen videos of.”


Day 2: Building anticipation and swell

Robbie McCormick

Boards arrived, but the swell was still on the way. We took a mellow start to the day, enjoying the breakfast service from NBR’s friendly local staff and waited for the afternoon session when the swell would start to fill in. We kept it simple and surfed out front at the region’s most popular wave, T-Land. The long left hander was playful and the steady offshore winds kept it nice and groomed. All in all, it was a good warm up session for everyone to get their feet in the wax. Anticipation continued to build for the forthcoming swell.


“I’ve been to Indo 6 times, but this is my first time here to Rote,” Imai said when we talked about the remote locale. “I didn’t know what to really expect because I’ve never really heard much about this place. This setup is super cool with the bungalows on the beach, a pool and a bar, and T-Land. Plus, we have those boats, so we can jet off to any spot we want to go to.”

Day 3: A Regular Footer’s Dream


On a trip stacked with regular footers, a right hander is always a premium. With NBR manager Greg’s recommendations, we headed out on the 10 minute boat trek to surf Sucky Mamas, a right that held potential. Unfortunately, the tide was filling in too quick and the session was cut short. We realized that tides are a huge factor in Indo and timing the spots on the right tide would prove to be key.


Heff Heff

Imaikalani Devault

Couple goals: Monyca and Ola Eleogram share everything.

Photos Heff

For the afternoon session, hitting the incoming tide before it filled in too much, we headed to the southwestern tip of the island to sample another right hander, Boa, the soon to be site of another resort. The steady offshore wind was more of a sideshore angle for Boa, which meant air wind and the punts ensued like clockwork.

Ola Eleogram

Day 4: A Marathon Session Boa was once again on the mind and with the swell completely filled in, it was on for the morning session. We arrived just in time to see an overhead set rifling down the reef with multiple lines out the back and nobody out. We couldn’t get on it any quicker and a marathon session went down with barrels, airs and cracks. “That was super fun,” Cody said after the surf. “We pulled up and saw like 3 or 4 of the biggest barrels, they were just reeling across the reef. We got out there and had a really fun session. Bunch of big turns, some barrels, some air sections, everything.” “We saw a wave barrel for 30 seconds, I couldn’t believe it!” Willy said. “That wave is a rifle, it’s pretty sick.”

With room to roam, Cody and Imai practice their tandem routine at T-Land.

Will Petrovic, way up the reef at T-Land.

Once back at NBR, it was lunch time followed by a siesta. The tide was high and while T-Land was still breaking, we knew the afternoon session would be better. And it was! Long 6-foot walls roped down the reef and the backside repertoire was on show. A good day of surfing, lots of waves, lots of sun, and lots of smiles. The evening Bintang never tasted so good.

Day 5: Boa, Boa, Boa The swell was on the decline, but once again Boa was the call. We just couldn’t get enough of the right hander! Robbie McCormick

Photos: Claire Murphy

“Boa’s sick,” Robbie said. “It’s like a barrel with an air section of a wave. It’s just such a long’s super fun.” When the conditions deteriorated later on, we went back to relax. Massages were booked, smoothies were ordered and vacation mode was in full effect. There’s no shortage of relaxing amenities at NBR. “I think there’s something for everybody here at Nemberala,” Monyca said. “If you’re a novice surfer, there’s some mellower waves, and they have everything here. Kayaks, paddleboards, scuba gear, and even if you don’t

Young gun Cody Young, who grew up threading right hand barrel sections at Honolua, experiences deja vu at the end of the road in Rote.


want to get in the water, you can lounge on the poolside deck, drink a cocktail, eat good food. There’s something for everybody.” As the sun lowered in the sky, T-Land was looking more and more fun and Monyca decided she would go out and get some sunset laps in.

Day 6: From Petrol Bombs to the Sandbar It was time to surf a new break, and we were all excited to find something a little hollower. Greg directed us to Petrol Bombs, an outside peak that barreled onto a shallow fringe reef. The swell was 3-4 foot and little drainers were on offer. Of course Ola was the tube hound, racking up shade with ease, and everyone else got a few as well. In the afternoon, the ultra low tide meant the nearby sandbar would be shallow enough to break with little rollers, so we took a handful of the local kids out for some push-ins. Needless to say, they were stoked! And the smiles were contagious for us all. “Hanging out with the kids on the sandbar was definitely a highlight for me,” Monyca said. “Communication was limited with the language barrier, but it didn’t hinder the emotion we felt from each other. It was fun to help them and have that connection with the local kids.”

Day 7: Surfer’s Paradise We hit up Petrols again, our new favorite wave on Rote, and had some fun before trolling on the way back. Cody carried the luck with him and hooked up with a nice size Aku fish. After a cruisy afternoon, with more smoothies and massages, the NBR staff sliced up Cody’s fish for some tasty sashimi pupus before dinner. The service at the resort is unreal, three meals a day, full bar, massages on order and lots of lounge furniture to kick back on and stare at the T-land lines rolling down the reef out front. Truly a surfer’s paradise.

Photos Heff

“Hanging out with

the kids on the sandbar was definitely a highlight for me,” Monyca said. “Communication was limited with the language barrier, but it didn’t hinder the emotion we felt from each other. It was fun to help them and have that connection with the local kids.”

“We got Petrol Bombs when it was solid 4-6 feet,” Imai said. “The swell goes from deep water to a really shallow shelf. It’s a wave of consequence.” Sequence: Tyler Rock

“Paddling back out, I saw Cody get the most insane wave, and I said to myself that I needed one of those,” Ola said. “Imai got one before me, he got super drained, and then I dropped in and the wave had a couple of sections to it. I saw Imai claiming it for me, and then I almost ran him over. He thought I fell inside the barrel, but I came out and was gave a big howl. I was so stoked.” Sequence: Monyca Eleogram

Day 8: Heaving Barrels and Reef Cuts The swell was back! We were all eager to see what Petrol Bombs would do with some proper waves hitting the lineup. And there certainly were some bombs exploding! We hit it on the low end of the tide, knowing that it would get better as it filled in. It was a little shallow to begin with and Ola found this out quickly, getting up close and personal leaving some skin on the reef, but as expected, it got better and better and better. While everyone got a few memorable ones, once again Ola locked into the best barrel, driving through two long heaving sections and coming out with casual style. “That was pretty intense at first,” Ola told me afterwards. “It’s slabbing on this dry reef, the shelf is just like gurgling everywhere. On my first one, I pulled in and thought it was going to be a perfect one and it pinched on me, throwing me onto the reef. I whacked my elbow and my knee, but I shook it off and stayed out there. Later, I broke my leash, stayed in the lineup and got some of my better waves, 3 in row that were just so good, just draining barrels.” “That was a highlight session, the waves were 6 feet, a couple 8 footers,” Willy said with a smile. “I got washed in, pretty annihilated, but it was definitely worth it, super fun.” After the sun sank below the horizon, Greg arranged a local dance group to perform in native attire and it was cool to get a sense of the Rote culture.

Robbie McCormick

Day 9: Cruising at T-Land It was nearing the end of the trip and everyone was happy with the waves we had scored. We took most of the day to relax, cruise around the western end of the island and soak in the local vibe. Rote is about as mellow as it gets, with free-range farm animals roaming everywhere, coconut trees swaying and locals smiling everywhere you go. In the afternoon, we surfed out front at T-Land, just because. You can only stare at symmetrically breaking waves so long before getting the urge to paddle out. The swell was on the decline again, but it was fun to wash off the day with a surf. “T-Land is such a fun, rippable left,” Imai said post surf. “We’ve gotten it head high, we’ve gotten it double overhead. And at low or high tide, you can surf it.”


Monyca Eleogram

Day 10: Reflecting on T-Land, Boa, Petrols and everything in between On our last full day on Rote, the surf was down, but not flat. There were still some waves to be found and after a lazy day of hanging out and decompressing from all the sessions prior, we all decided to surf one more time. The afternoon session at Boa was a nice end to the trip. We got rights, lefts, rippable walls, barrels, air sections and virtually no crowd at every spot except T-Land. During our last dinner, we reflected on the highlights of the trip: the 10 turns Cody did on one wave, that tweaked rotation Imai pulled, Willy’s spot way up the reef at T-Land, Robbie’s crazy antics, Monyca’s evening flare out front, and of course Ola’s nug at Petrols. We all wondered if we would come back, or more likely when.

Photos: Heff

Big mahalos to WaterWays Surf Adventures and Nemberala Beach Resort!


m a ncing

t t s g on

“This year, my boards of choice were a 9'9 log and a 5'2 twin fin keel fish, both shaped by Noosa local Thomas Bexon, along with a 5’9” Chaz Kinoshita,” Sierra said.

For the past few years, Rosie Jaffurs, Sierra LerBack and Keoki Saguibo have ventured to Australia's

wave rich Sunshine Coast for the Noosa Festival of Surfing, taking advantage of the area’s world class righthand pointbreaks atop longboards and twin fins, from Noosa to Byron and everything in between.

he Su t s nshine Coa Photos: Keoki

“I brought two boards: a 9’4” Two Crows Yardstick, and a J Boards 5’6” fish,” Rosie said.

“Who you travel with makes your trip,” Sierra said. “When planning out trips, I like to connect with likeminded, low stress people. Rosie and Keoki made this trip great because we were all on the same page. We simply wanted to surf.”

“Noosa reminds me of those runners at Ehukai, but it’s a point break instead of a sandbar,” Rosie said. “It’s a perfect right hand runner, ideal for nose riding.”

“Perfect point breaks surrounded by a forest is pretty different than anything I’ve ever experienced at home in Hawaii,” Sierra said. “But like Hawaii, Noosa has a tightly knit surf community where everyone knows everyone in the lineup.”

“During this trip, we rallied together a group of friends and did a strike mission to a secret spot in hopes of good waves,” Sierra said. “We drove across miles of open beach to come to a perfect peeling wave traveling nearly a mile down the sand... it was a dream! We almost missed Keoki’s heat at the Noosa Festival of Surfing, but I’d say we all thought it was worth it.”

“It’s nice and easy to stay in your comfort zone, but traveling helps you grow,” Rosie said. “It opens our eyes to what else is out there in the world, as well as new perspectives and different ways of doing things. You can take things you enjoyed from your trip and things you didn’t enjoy and grow from there.”

“First point Noosa is one of those waves where there isn't a drop of water out of place,” Sierra said. “Every wave, peeling all the way into the beach along glowing white sand bars. It's a surreal place, everyone is stoked and totally consumed by the beauty of it.”

“W e got so much rain on this trip,” Rosie said. “Quaking thunder, lightning exploding across the night sky... It was the craziest thing I have ever seen, and staying in a van through it all was quite exciting!”






Imai Devault is a man of few words. Spend any time around the 19-year-old, from the Volcom house during the winter season to catching him cruising with friends on Maui, and he’ll exude a laid back and quiet demeanor. His surfing style, though, is a stark contrast: it’s loud; it yells and acting as a spotlight, it requires attention. He boosts impressive airs, pulls into heaving barrels, and slashes the open faces to a million foamy pieces both in and out of the contest jersey. We sat down with Imai to talk about his competitive surfing goals, his surfing influences, and what he’s learned by spending the winter season at one of the most fabled houses on the North Shore.





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Can you remember the moment when you fell in love with the sport of surfing, Imai? When I was about 4, my dad took me to Launiupoko Beach Park in Lahaina, and paddled me out on a longboard. He pushed me into an ankle high wave, and I stood up and rode it pretty far. I was hooked then and there. Who are your surfing influences? Definitely the Irons brothers. Growing up in Hawaii, they're definitely everyone's idols. I watched them religiously growing up, both Andy and Bruce.



I’m focusing on my competitive mindset now. The World Surf League Qualifying Series is so hard, and I'm still just trying to figure out how to make some heats at that level. What kind of boards are you riding? I ride for KT Surfboards out of Haiku, Maui, and the boards work amazing. My go to shortboard is a 5'11, 18 3/4, 26.4 liters. Freesurfing versus contest surfing: do you prefer one more than the other? I love both equally. I love surfing, and I also really love the competitive side to it. My goal is to definitely qualify for the Championship Tour, but if that doesn't happen, I'll be just as happy to be a freesurfer. As long as I'm surfing, I'll be happy. Airs, barrels or turns: which is your personal favorite? Barrels. Although I love each equally. But I think if I had to chose, surfing a barreling wave always wins. You spend a lot of time around coaches like Dave Riddle and Jason Shibata - would you say they’re your mentors?

Who are some of the most exciting guys to watch at Honolua Bay during a big day? Dusty Payne is one of my favorites, he always gets the best ones. I also really enjoy watching Kai Barger go backside out there. He makes it look too easy. What has staying in the Volcom house during multiple winters taught you? To be respectful, mind your own business, do your own thing and always clean up after yourself. As long as you're respectful anywhere on the North Shore, you'll have a good time. How are you fine tuning your surfing right now?

They are definitely my mentors and have been most of my life. They're some of the best guys to have in your corner, and they have both taught me so much. Having good mentors, I think, is so important. I'm very lucky to have been able to work with them as much as I have in my life so far. What can we expect from you in the future? Hopefully scoring some better waves this winter, and some future contest results on the QS.

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During a lay day in the calm waters off Rote, an island found at the Southern tip of Indonesia, Cody Young was fiercely reeling a fishing pole as an Aku battled back on the other end. Suddenly, everyone on the boat changed their cheers to yells: “Turn it over, turn the reel over!� With a laugh, Cody flipped the pole 180 degrees and continued reeling, eventually pulling the Aku into the boat with a smile.


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“It was a good fight, it took me 5 minutes to get it in the boat,” Cody said with a smile. “I was reeling it wrong at first, and then I figured it out and Willy Petrovic and Robbie McCormick told me what to do exactly, so I got the hang of it.”



days. My first contest was at Ho'okipa when I was 9-yearsold. I sat on the inside left and caught whitewater. In the first few years, I liked competing because all my friends did it, but the older I became, I realized I loved trying to better myself each and every heat.

his mood, he usually listens and tries to do what I tell him. What are your surfing goals, and how do you plan on reaching those goals?

I’ve learned to cover your boards with your wetsuits on the tail and the front, so if they drop it on the tail, then you at least have a little padding there.

My main goal is to qualify for the CT. To do that, I have to

What Cody already has the hang of is the competitive grind of surfing. The 18-yearold Maui native won his first National title at the NSSA Championships in 2016, finished runner up at the same event this year, and also had a semifinal finish at the WSL World Junior Championships in January. Under the tutelage of Freddy Patacchia, and surrounding himself with the talented Quiksilver team, Cody is continuing to learn and train, hoping to finish strong on the Qualifying Series this year, aiming to achieve his lifelong dream: to compete on the Championship Tour. What was it like growing up on Maui, Cody? Growing up in Maui was amazing! I couldn't have asked for a better place to be born and raised. My best memories from my true grommet days are from being down at the pavilions at Ho'okipa all day long with my friends. Whether we were surfing, fishing, or jumping off rocks, we always had fun. What was your first surfing competition, and what did you like about surfing competitively? I got into competing fairly late compared to the kids these


Who were some of the Maui boys you looked up to growing up? I watched every Maui guy from Nalu Wallace to Ian Walsh and Albee Layer really closely. I look up to all these guys and more because I'm constantly inspired by their drive. They're also good role models.

work hard, stay focused, and always give it 100%, but most of all, I'll make sure I'm always having fun doing it. What’s it been like working with Freddy Patacchia through the Quiksilver team?

It's been really cool to work with and get to know Fred. He's obviously got so much experience and a lot to teach, and the main thing I learned Talk to us about surfing alongside your little brother, from him is what it takes to get to the top. That and how to surf Levi. In a recent interview, a heat. he called you his “biggest inspiration.” Do you ever You’ve spent many summers give him tips? on the road traveling, so what are your board bag travel tips I give my little brother tips all from your experiences? the time, and depending on

What are your 5 travel essentials? Neck pillow, Bose headphones, phone, computer, and downloaded TV shows so I can watch it on the plane. What are your plans now that high school is in the rear view mirror? For the rest of 2017, I'd like to finish well on the Qualifying Series and win World Juniors. Along with that, I want to continue to work with both Therasurf and Surfers Healing to help kids with special needs surf. I plan on organizing another event soon and making it an annual thing.



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Monyca Eleogram is the definition of an island girl. She grew up more country than most, sequestered away in the remote Maui town of Hana. She gravitated towards surfing and this took the country girl to new places.


Getting her start as a sponsored competitive surfer, Monyca surfed for the Hawaii Junior Surf team at several World Champion events, but was never quite fulfilled. Once she joined forces with Roxy, Monyca, now 27-years-old, found her groove and passion as a true

"Roxy Girl", traveling the world to interesting locales and shooting campaigns that span multiple sport genres. Through it all, she has always stayed humble and true to her roots as a Hawaii surfer girl.

Let’s start with your role with Roxy. How did it all start and how has it evolved? My role with Roxy is unreal! We travel quite often out of the year, I would say probably 100 days of the year we’re surfing, doing things for the swim aspect or even snow campaigns. I get to check so many

incredible places off my bucket list. I think the role has evolved more so because of the way I've taken it. I’ve been doing it for about 6 years now and in the beginning, I focused on getting there, getting the job done, and going home. Obviously I had fun, but now I think I have so much more appreciation for my position because I have opened up more to experiencing different cultures, and talking to different people and embracing my location based on not only getting there and doing my job, but also embracing all the lifestyles and experiencing it for myself. So I think that’s been the biggest part of my evolution, opening up a little bit more.





You’re close with most of the girls on the Roxy team. What’s it like traveling with them? Most of the time, I get to travel with some of my best friends, so that’s a treat in its own. I look forward to going to work because I get to see my best friends and we get to surf together and get to be in amazing locations. Everybody has such a different personality

representing the brand, so it’s really really fun. What’s it like being on the frontline of pioneering and really diving into the freesurf model/ lifestyle role? There’s a lot of time spent creating content for the actual clothing, but I definitely have to focus on my down time to create content for surfing more because that's how I got to where I am. I’m still trying 72


to rip and whenever we do trips with Roxy that involve surfing, I try to stay out as long as I can and try and get the best shot in whatever I’m wearing because I want a surf photo to be run so bad! That’s my ultimate goal: I’m shooting all the time and it’s awesome to see myself in stores but to have a surf shot, I’d be stoked. It’s way harder to get a surf photo than you looking cute on the beach, you know. It’s a goal I’m always striving for. Do you feel like you’ve become a role model? Definitely. I think I’m an attainable pro surfer, too. It’s hard to give advice on the subject because I was really lucky to fall into the position. I don’t know if there is a way to have a surfer/ model/ freestyle type career. I simply stuck with what I love. I knew that contest surfing wasn’t for me, so I think my advice would be if you know the direction you want to go, be vocal with your sponsors and people who represent you and let them know you’re down to work, but maybe you’re just not that interested in doing contests, and hopefully they’ll find that position for you that works. Then, you have to work hard and be grateful for everything that comes your way, and that’s what got me to where I am. I made myself easy to work with and tried to get along with everybody. I think I have a role that girls are looking at more because it's a totally different story than being competitive and training on a circuit. I’m here to tell girls to have fun, ride whatever boards you want and surf when you want, and to stay stoked and improve. At the same time, in my position I don’t have to be hard on myself, which is nice, but I have to be hard in other ways, like making sure I keep fit in the right way and things like that. What’s your training regime when you’re traveling? Usually when I’m on the road with Roxy, we are busy. We’re up before sunrise, getting hair done, makeup, and then shooting all day nonstop, breaking for lunch. I think it’s all a little hard on my body through the travel and everything else to do an actual workout routine, because we’re moving and when we’re shooting fitness, we’re actually running and swimming. A lot of

the times we’re in the water, so I don’t really workout when I’m on those types of trips. On surf trips, it's different. I’ll mix in a little yoga and stretching and things like that, taking it easy, since I’m already surfing so much. I leave the actual training, the squats, yoga, running and everything else for when I’m home because I’m able to balance the energy and not over do it. So on the road, I keep it simple: a little bit of yoga and then whatever we’re doing already, like surfing or running. What’s been your favorite Roxy trip? That’s tough, because I’ve had so many insane ones so I think it's hard to categorize the very best one. I’ve been to some places in the world that I probably would have never gone without them bringing me. The most fun I’ve had on a Roxy trip is in Hawaii. For example, we recently had a house on Oahu. We were right there in Waikiki with party waves all day and shooting into the night with strobe lights and swimming and the beach and the warm weather... there’s nothing better than being in Hawaii. What’s your favorite thing about surf travel? I like finding perfect waves, because I feel like where we live, we have fun waves but not necessarily perfect. It’s fun to surf a wave that you can do more than 2 or 3 turns on. That’s what I love the most: riding a wave for a longer amount than I’m used to.


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PAU HANA / SEAN MURPHY By Cash Lambert Photos: Gary Burns

For Sean Murphy, what started as an innate passion for surf travel blossomed into a 20+ year career at WaterWays Surf Adventures, and to date, the 53-year-old has logged over 100 surf trips in the name of the company he created. Let’s rewind: By 20-years-old, the Pacific Palisades, CA native had already traveled extensively through Mexico’s beachbreaks, Hawaii’s top echelon waves and the idyllic reef breaks in Tahiti. With an education in accounting and finance, Sean found himself sequestered in a Public Accounting firm with an unquenchable desire to chart the unknown. “That environment wasn’t for me,” he said. What was for him was surf travel, and he decided to turn his passion into a profit. In 1994, during the era when “no one had internet and everyone used typewriters and fax machines,” Sean founded WaterWays Surf Adventures, a travel company that specializes in unique surf travel and surf trips around the globe, with premier surf destinations including Tavarua Island in Fiji and Chicama Surf Resort in Peru.

“The notion of a strategic strike was quite rare,” Sean said, explaining the industry in the mid 1990s. “People were much more accepting of choosing a destination, getting the seasonal information from us, and booking a trip well in advance and taking what they got. Surf Fax was the first real forecast available, with a fax you could sign up for 3 days a week. It was fabulous.” Fast forwarding to today’s explosion of digital media, an increase in access to cameras and secret spots becoming inundated after social media shout outs, Sean and WaterWays had to adapt to the changing climate. “We can now reach so many more people, but so much of all the info is available via so many sources,” he said. “Our mission statement from day one is still on every wall in our office: We take the gamble and guess work out of your surf travel holiday while at the same time providing the best service and value for your travel dollar. We live by this statement, and it has been the key to our long term success.”

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Throughout his 20+ year career, Sean has not only scored at empty waves in the most isolated locations; he’s also pioneered many trips that customers are now embarking on. Like any explorer, Sean has heaps of expedition tales. “Very early in the days of WaterWays, I believe July/August of 1994, I received a call from a guy named Gary Burns,” said Sean. “He had seen one of our ¼ page black and white advertisements in Surfer Magazine promoting Mentawai charters. He said he had a small sailboat and wanted to do charters in an area called West Timor, known as Rote. I had never heard of the area, and the call seemed odd. He explained that he had plans to visit his sister in San Francisco, and if I was interested I could fly up


surf there. Unfortunately, the Andaman Islands were closed to all tourism to protect some indigenous people, and had been closed for over 50 years. When I got word that they were opening their borders under strict visa requirements, I chartered a boat to sail there from Thailand and met a small group who flew in via India. It took over 2 days for us to fly there and 3 days for the boat to sail there. We had no idea where we were going. I got the nautical charts for the Mentawais and marked all the spots. I then got the nautical charts for the Andaman Islands, which are way north of Indonesia, above the Nicobar Islands. I compared the two charts and set out a 14-night game plane to search for surf. We scored some epic surf, and more over just some epic travel experiences. We were definitely some of the

to meet him there and he would show me nautical charts with all the breaks laid out, along with a book he put together with photos of each spot. It seemed really strange, but I flew up to meet him and he showed me what felt like a secret treasure map. I made plans to visit him on his boat the following May and had the most amazing surf experience. It was everything he said and more. That lead to a 15+ year business relationship, operating two separate boat charters together and eventually building Nemberala Beach Resort together. Gary and I still surf together whenever possible.”

first surfers to get in there, before the Surfer Magazine trip that broke it open as a potential destination.”

He continued: “On one of my early trips to the Outer Atoll Maldives, before any regular charters were working down there, Tony Hinde Hussein told me about a place called the Andaman Islands. Nobody knew anything about the area, but Tony had some intel from “reliable sources” that there was great

When he hasn’t been on a surf trip, Sean has been continuing to methodically build the WaterWays brand. “I have been sitting at much of the same desk with much of the same computer monitor for 20+ years and still enjoy coming to work every day,” he said. “I am the luckiest guy in the world.”

o with today’s vast digital presence, are there any spots left to discover? “There are,” Sean said. “But at this point, I’m not telling any more. That may be a bit hypocritical. We have always tried to be sensitive to what we sell and how we sell it. We used to limit the number of people we would book to any one location, but now the cat is out of the bag and it’s difficult to slow the wheels of progress.”

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Spending a day out on the water with friends leaves us invigorated, but to what extent is it worth it? The annual Independence Day Flotilla in Waikiki begs this question. Sun baked bods floating on plastic flamingos without a care in the world and drifting quickly out to sea with an imperfect safety net of jet skis on standby to save them. As the sun set on another Fourth of July last month, I headed back to shore. After watching hundreds of people being shuttled back to land and after collecting hundreds of pounds of their trash from the ocean and ocean floor, the question resurfaces: is this worth it? The Flotilla sprouted up as part of The MacFarlane Regatta, an outrigger canoe race that began in 1943. It’s the oldest annual canoe race in the world and the only one specifically including surfing during the OHCRA series. Separated by lanes, teams paddle out through the surf in Waikiki, make a turn around a flag and paddle quickly

back towards shore. But what makes this race so unique and exciting is that a team going into the turn in last place can make a miraculous comeback with a good wave and some luck and skill. The Flotilla came to be as a result of that halfway turn. Anchored and often tied up with other boats, spectators cheered exuberantly for their team as they made the turn and began the exciting surfing aspect towards the finish line. The current amalgamation is a far cry from the original. For the past decade, I’ve been participating in the Flotilla but five years ago, I could no longer consciously participate without doing something about the litter issue. This was also the same time that our non-profit Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii was getting established, so the action was natural. Just like our regular cleanups, why not have some fun while doing good? Our first year included tying three garbage cans together and strapping them onto

a SUPsquatch. We greatly underestimated the demand for our services and quickly ran out of carrying capacity for trash. As we departed, we peeked under the mass of boards and ass-filled floaties to witness a torrential downpour of trash cascading to the ocean floor. Curious fish investigated the new inhabitants of the outer reef. The surf was pumping that day, and as we navigated towards shore after a long day out at the Flotilla, a freak set hit us and broke our pile of bags apart. We operate under the principle “if you can’t tie knots, tie lots” and enough of the knots on the thick black garbage bags stayed true. Plus, the bags floated and were easily hauled back onto the SUPsquatch. At that point, we made it back to shore unscathed and were welcomed by the beach boys, who helped us land our bounty of trash. he City and State have been focusing on figuring out a way to reduce the risk of someone getting seriously injured or even dying at the Flotilla. It’s been five years now since we’ve been involved and nothing has happened on the legal front despite routine press conferences stating otherwise. But we have seen a large increase in presence of DLNR, Police, Lifeguards, and Coast Guard. Although their presence can be seen as a buzzkill by some, they have been helping us catch loose trash and have helped hundreds of wayward participants back to shore.

The Flotilla event is growing through social media and probably next year will be the biggest one yet. There are still hundreds of pounds of debris being collected by our teams, but the overall number has decreased. We see more people bringing out net bags to hold their trash and people picking up after others. We see people looking out for their friends and strangers because admittedly, drinking out in the ocean is not safe. Our most rewarding part are the hundreds of mahalos from the crowd. But the risk remains. This year, someone left in critical condition and nearly a dozen others were admitted to the hospital. Hundreds were rescued/shuttled back to shore. The worst is inevitable. Are we condoning this behavior by cleaning up? Are Lifeguards, Coast Guard, and DLNR enabling behavior by being a safety net for drifting and tired floaters? Many questions remain. For us at Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii, as long as the event is going to happen, we are committed to have a presence to help keep it clean and welcome the presence of our law enforcement. If you want to help us next year, we’ll be out there again. Tie a laundry basket to your SUP, drop a bin into a float to collect trash, avoid bringing out anything wrapped in plastic, but most importantly, even though it’s not your trash, grab it. Kahi Pacarro is the Executive Director of Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii.

Ricky Peters Photo Bobby Kaupu

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INDUSTRY NOTES Vans embarked on a journey to adventure with the worldwide release of the UltraRange campaign in July. Marking a major milestone in Vans’ footwear design history, the UltraRange leads the path forward for innovation, emphasizing the brand’s expanded vision to create a versatile footwear model that provides advanced comfort, lightweight traction, and superior mobility combined with Vans’ timeless style. Living out of a suitcase on multiple expeditions a year, Vans pro surfer Pat Gudauskas finds endless inspiration traveling around the world in search of the perfect surf. With his collaborative insight, Vans ventured to create a new silhouette that offered maximum versatility across diverse landscapes and lifestyles. “What if we created something that brings the look of Vans together with the functionality needed for different terrains—city streets, boardwalks, mountain paths,” Pat expressed. “…Bring the element of comfortable, hearty and functional all in one shoe—it would have comfort and utility, but look like Vans no matter where you are.”

Vissla has once again partnered up with the Surfrider Foundation for the 3rd Annual Creators & Innovators Upcycle Contest to convert waste into want and raise awareness of plastic pollution.

To help turn the tide of plastic pollution, Vissla and Surfrider are teaming up to challenge the wave-conscious to upcycle an old or found object into a functional wave riding craft (i.e. surfboards, handplanes, paipos, fins, alaias, skim boards, boats, etc.). All contestants must enter a video or three to six photographs showing their project from start to finish via Instagram with the hashtag #CreatorsContest and country of residence by September 10, 2017. Judging will be based on innovation, functionality, creativity, design, and aesthetics. Four finalists in two categories – Under 16 and Open Divisions – will be selected and asked to send in their projects for verification and final voting. Finalists will be announced at the final event on October 21, 2017, awarded exclusive prizes and invited to an event gallery show to have their final object on display. For more information and contest rules, visit creatorscontest. Find out more about ways to get involved with reducing plastic pollution and protecting the ocean, waves and beaches at

The Vans UltraRange embraces a life of exploration, enabling creative pursuits from all corners of the globe to inspire you to get there—new cities, new spots, new unknowns. Visit Ultrarange to learn more.

Kauai’s Tyler Newton announced over the summer that joined RVCA’s surf team. “After losing sponsorships in 2012 due to bad decisions and not taking my career seriously, I've had to scratch and try twice as hard for the last 2 years to prove that I can still hang with the big dogs,” he said. “Wouldn't be possible without all the great people that have helped me so much along the way. Thank you so much for believing in me and allowing me to have a second chance. I can't wait to see what the next few years holds!”

John Choi

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The greatest view in surfing, no matter which ocean you find yourself in. Photo: Keoki

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